The civil war was one of the biggest events our nation edured. Four years of gruesome battle over freedom and equality. It changed our nation and it changed us. The war itself started in 1861 on April 12th. However the issues of the civil war started long before that. The consequences would last centuries.
In 1619 servants were purchased from a dutch ship. Soon they would become slaves to their masters. From that point on, one by one the colonies began to legalize slavery. They began to recognize a ?need for slaves to prosper in life. In 1688 Quakers, a big religious group at the time, began to protest the inappropriateness of slavery. They argued it was improper of christian people to own slaves and to give them unfair treatment. In 1739 the first violent rebellion of slaves happened in South Carolina. By this time many slaves had already began to run away to territories where they would be considered free and not property. By july of 1776 the colonies had declared their independence from great britain. The founding fathers of america create the Declaration of independence that states all men are created equal.
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However, the statement doesnt seem entirely true as the writers are slave owners and slavery and discrimination is still present. A year later the colony Vermont is the first to stop slavery in the area. Then in 1780 Pennsylvania would become the first state to slowly abolish slavery. 1783 marks the year african americans are allowed to vote in Massachusetts. Although it wouldn’t be till 1870, almost a century later, that all african americans would be given the right to vote. Slaves were still running for their freedom but in 1793 the Fugitive Slave Act was passed by congress. Allowing runaway slaves to be arrested or returned to their previous slave owners. This was not a working system because many people could lie about a man stating he was previously a slave even if he was not owned by them. In addition to the return of previous slaves, people who helped slaves run away or helped in the protection of them, paid fines up to $500 dollars. Slaves still continue to run away and start rebellions that are violent and big. Later the underground railroad would form. A system to help slaves escape to north for freedom.
Congress then, in 1807, bans the importation of new slaves to the american states, territories and colonies. The missouri compromise of 1821 would then divide the slave states from the free states. States then continue to abolish slavery while others decide to legalize it. Abolitionist begin to write about bringing an end to slavery causing the murder of some. States are added to the nation as more and more slaves run for freedom. Hundreds of slaves escape with the help of the underground railroad and previous slaves. Harriet Tubman being a well known slave today, returned multiple times to aid those in search of freedom. Then in 1857 Dred Scott, a former slave, goes to court to fight for his freedom along with his families. The court then states blacks are not citizens. Then in 1860 Abraham Lincoln is elected president; he believes the states cannot be separated.
The war begins in 1861 with the attack on Fort Sumter. The Southern states become known as the confederate states of america while the North become known as the union states. States also begin to leave the union and join the confederacy. The union having 21 states and the confederacy having 11. In july of 1861 the union loses the battle at Bull Run. In 1862 they battle in shiloh resulting in gains and losses for both sides. Then in August of 1862 they have a second battle at Bull Run. 55,000 confederates, and 75,000 union soldiers. It becomes one more loss for the union soldiers. Then comes the battle at Antietam, which becomes known as ?the bloodiest day in U.S. military history with a loss of 26,000 men(The U.S. Civil War 1861-1865, para. 28). However, the same can be said about the Battle of Gettysburg. Which is one of the most well known battles in our Nation’s history.Next comes another loss for the confederates with the battle at Fredericksburg. Congress then, in 1863, calls for a draft of men ages 20 to 45. However, men who pay $300 dollars will not be subjected to going or if they provide a replacement for their spot. The lower class people complain about this, saying their lives are as important as those of the wealthy. 17,000 union soldiers and 13,000 confederates are then later killed in Chancellorsville.y Yet another win for the union at the battle of Gettysburg as the confederates surrender as once again they begin to lose the battle and the war. Riots and mobs soon begin to break out in protest in the drafting of the young boys and men.
Eventually leading to the deaths of men, women, and children. Not to forget the innocent black men and women who were being killed by white men and women. Finally the confederate soldiers snag another win with the battle at Chickamauga, again in 1863. Later that year President Abraham Lincoln would give a two minute speech that would come to be known as the Gettysburg Address. In honor of those men who had fallen in battle. The Confederates then take one last win win the battle at Cold Harbor. As the union leader General Grant makes costly mistakes. Weeks past as the final battles of the war happen. Two years later on January 31, the united states write the 13th Amendment and congress ratified the thirteenth amendment and wait for it to come into play.
As the war draws to an end more and more battles are fought as thousands of soldiers lives are lost. The fight for the end of slavery is gruesome. With the loss of president Abraham Lincoln in 1865 by assassination by John Wilkes Booth. Andrew Jackson then takes over as president for the remainder of the war and so forth. In May of 1865 the confederates finally surrender with the death of more than 620,000 americans most from disease and illness. As the war ends a parade is held to celebrate the closing of the war. On December 6, 1865 the United States adds the thirteenth amendment. Finally abolishing slavery once and for all.
With war finally over it seems as though all will be good. In spite of that, more trouble lies ahead. The battle for equality has just begun. Blacks will still receive unfair treatment and discrimination. Blacks will continue to fight for their equality for many more centuries to come. Segregated from the whites, blacks stay as the lowest race. With whites being the most superior. Now starts the civil rights movement. Where more lives will be lost and more battle fought. Some violent and others peaceful.
The civil war will forever be one of the greatest wars in our american history. The only time in our history where our nation was divided and battled against each other. It was definitely an event that we do not want to repeat. It shaped us and provided a stepping stone into another significant time period in american history, The Civil Rights Movement. Today the Civil War helps us understand the importance of equality. Helping even with the equality and rights of women. It will forever be a major, and highly influential event in history.
I chose the civil war because it has always been the war that fascinated me the most. I always found it interesting that people i see everyday would have been treated differently if it wasn’t for that war. Its crazy to think about how colored people were treated so different even though we are all the same. No race being better than another. Additionally it sad to think that the issues of discrimination and unequal rights still exist today. People of a different race face unfair treatment and inequality throughout the nation today although it is minor compared to the history of discrimination. It seems as though it will always be an issues and it will always be something we have to work towards fixing.
This project for me, was fun and interesting. I learned so much more than i would have expected. I currently already knew a decent amount of information on this topic and writing this helped me understand why it’s so important for us to learn about our history. Today we have Museums and Monuments that serve as a reminder of the shocking, and horrid yet much needed battle. We remember all those who fought and those who still fight for a better future and life. One filled with freedom and equality for all races.
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